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The first step in your Northwestern Direction is learning how to apply

Application Deadlines

Track key dates for your application type.

Your deadlines will vary depending on your application round at Northwestern: QuestBridge, Early Decision, Regular Decision, or Transfer.

QuestBridge Applicant Early Decision Applicant Regular Decision Applicant Transfer Applicant
Application Due Date September 26, 2023 November 1, 2023 January 3, 2024 March 15, 2024
Financial Aid Due Date September 26, 2023 December 1, 2023 February 1, 2024 March 15, 2024
Decision Release December 2023 December 2023 March 2024 Begins May 2024, ongoing

Details on these Deadlines

Application Materials

Review our requirements.


Required Materials

First-Year Applicants, QuestBridge

First-Year Applicants, Early Decision and Regular Decision
  • Common Application or Apply Coalition with Scoir*
  • Northwestern supplement, (with additional writing supplements)
  • Official secondary school transcript and school report
  • Counselor recommendation
  • At least one teacher recommendation
  • Early Decision Agreement (for Early Decision applicants)
  • Official proof of English language proficiency (for applicants whose first/primary language is not English or whose secondary schooling has not been in English)
  • Non-refundable $75 application fee or fee waiver

Transfer Applicants
  • Common Application or Apply Coalition with Scoir (including Northwestern supplement)
  • Official university transcript(s) from all universities attended, must demonstrate at least one year of full-time undergraduate study 
  • Official secondary school transcript noting graduation
  • College report
  • Academic evaluation
  • Non-refundable $75 application fee or fee waiver


Optional and Program-Specific Materials

First-Year Applicants

First-Year and Transfer Applicants

Identities and Affiliations

Additional guidance based on your background(s).

Questions before applying?

Connect with our students and admission staff.

Preparing to Thrive.

Read our advice on developing a foundation that will help you in college (and beyond!).


The "Fit" Factor

Learn about how we consider “fit” in the admission process.

The "Fit" Factor

Academic possibilities

Advice on common topics relating to academic study.

Your Academic Path

Applied Learning

Browse our YouTube series where Northwestern representatives share insights on various aspects of the college admission process.

Applied Learning